Cavs Will Pick Sixth; GM Keeps Options Open

CLEVELAND (AP) - The Cleveland Cavaliers found out Sunday they will pick sixth in the NBA draft, and general manager Jim Paxson said he'd like to come up with a player who could help win games right away.

But it might be difficult to find that person in the June 26 draft, he said.

"I think there is decent depth in the draft for players with NBA futures, but at the same time there aren't a lot of guys who are really ready to play," Paxson said.

Cleveland's position in the draft lottery was no surprise. The Cavaliers 29-53 record was sixth worst in the NBA last season.

"It's a lottery. It's luck. You can only control what you can. We've got the sixth pick, and that's what we'll deal with going forward," Paxson said. "We have a lot of options."

The Cavaliers intend to work out Maybyner Hilario, a 6-foot-9 forward from Vasco da Gama, Brazil, on Monday.

Paxson last year chose a developmental project, DeSagana Diop, a 7-foot center just out of high school.

"If there is somebody we feel is more ready to step in and play, whatever the position is, or if there is a way as we get closer to the draft to move that pick to help ourselves, we'll just do whatever we can to make the team better." Paxson said.

Although he may be chosen before the Cavaliers pick, Cleveland has looked into the availability of 7-foot-5 Chinese center Yao Ming.

"He's 7-5 and he's draft eligible, and probably for a smaller market like us and some of the other teams maybe ahead of us, there are some definite hurdles," Paxson said.

"We've done all the background and talked to the specific people. There is no guarantee, unless there are certain things met, that Yao Ming can even come over and play right away."

(Copyright 2002 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)